|Image: Flickr User - DVIDSHUB|
Christopher Cowan, Thulasi Wigneswaran, Elisabeth Buchan and Alexander Vipondare
The Indian Navy was hit by a massive data leak last week after sensitive technical data about its new Scorpene class attack submarines fell into the hands of The Australian. An inside source at a subcontractor for DCNS (the French defence contractor that builds the submarines) is thought to be responsible, although the motive behind the leak remains unclear. This raises worrying questions for Chile and Malaysia, which also operate the Scorpene. Less clear are the implications for Australia, which recently awarded DCNS the rights to a $50 billion contract to build its fleet of future submarines.
In an interview with ScoutWarrior last week, retired US Navy Rear Admiral Charles Richard stated that the Navy and its industrial partners have the capacity to build two Virginia class nuclear-powered attack submarines per year in the 2020s. It was previously thought that only one Virginia class could be built per year due to construction beginning on the Columbia class ballistic missile nuclear submarines around the same time. This newfound industrial capacity will go a long way to help mitigate the US Navy’s looming shortage of attack submarines in a time when the number of countries operating submarines has increased dramatically.